Education: The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) in Gujarat, in a meeting with the state government, has pushed for compulsory teaching of Sanskrit from class I. Senior representatives of the Sangh and its allies met Education Minister Jitu Vaghani, senior officials of the department and Gujarat BJP organizational general secretary Ratnakar in April to discuss the implementation of the new National Education Policy (NEP).
Sanskrit teaching was the main emphasis of about 20 representatives of RSS affiliated organizations including Vidya Bharti, Shashik Mahasangh, Sanskrit Bharati, Bhartiya Shikshan Mandal in the meeting with Vaghani, along with about 25 senior government representatives, reported The Indian Express. The Sangh also pushed for inclusion of Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana and Mahabharata in school curriculum, making Vedic Mathematics compulsory, providing value education based on Upanishads and regulating private universities.
In its presentation during the meeting, the RSS had asked the state government to allot at least six periods in a week for Sanskrit. Interestingly, the three-language formula in NEP 2020 does not stipulate any specific language to be compulsorily taught in the school. The policy states, “The three languages learned by children shall be the choice of the states, territories and of course the students themselves, as long as at least two of the three languages are native to India.”
Asked why the RSS is promoting Sanskrit under the three-language formula, when there is no provision in the NEP, Himmanjay Paliwal, Gujarat organization minister of RSS-affiliated Sanskrit Bharati, told The Indian Express that the NEP is based on Sanskrit. Speaks round about (vague). It is not clear whether the NEP is for or against the language. There is no clarity on this.
meeting may be held next month
A separate meeting between the Gujarat government and the RSS may be held in July in this regard. Education Minister Jitu Vaghani said that we are getting many suggestions. The government will work according to the practical policy and they will be implemented accordingly.
The Government of Gujarat has launched schemes to promote Sanskrit learning in the last three years. The state government started the Gujarat Sanskrit Education Board in 2019 to promote Sanskrit.